Thanks to SMJ friend Neil Best for alerting me to this story in Newsday by Islanders beat writer Greg Logan on the decision by the New York Islanders not to renew the contracts of radio announcers Steve Mears and Chris King.
According to the article, the move was made after the team received permission from Madison Square Garden Network to simulcast the television audio of announcers Howie Rose and Bill Jaffe.
This is the first I had heard of such an arrangement by a “big-4” professional sports team to simulcast television audio on radio, that is until pointed out in Logan’s piece that the practice is also being done by the Buffalo Sabres.
This may soon become the trend in sports where the role of radio play-by-play coverage becomes less relevant. Only baseball, with its slower pace, still translates well on radio. With ratings drops and revenue cuts facing teams and radio stations, I can see a day when all audio broadcasts of games will be off terrestrial radio and housed within a team’s website. Actually not a bad idea.